The sixth largest country in the world by population, Brazil is home to the most species of plants and animals in the world. As one of the world’s most diverse countries, Brazil is a hub for talented workers from all backgrounds. Known as a melting pot, the country has some of the largest Italian, Arab, and Japanese communities in the world.
In Brazil, all foreign employees must have a residence permit and a visa. The residence permit is a request to the Brazilian government that must be granted to allow the employee to work and reside within the country.
There are three main types of work visas in Brazil: permanent visa, VITEM V visa, and VITEM II visa.
Permanent visa (visto permanente)
Grants employee permanent resident
Granted to researchers, scientists, and investors with more than $50,000 USD in Brazilin banks or $200,000 USD invested in the country
VITEM V visa
Most common visa
Temporary visa for foreign nationals in industries like tech and research
Approval from the Ministry of Labor and Employment is required
VITEM II visa
Granted for foreign nationals who want to travel for business
Specialized option that is valid for up to 10 years and allows you to travel to the country for 90-day periods at a time
Each visa has different requirements for approval. As the VITEM V visa is the most common, most foreign employees trying to work within Brazil need to meet the following requirements:
2 years of relevant experience in the field in which they are obtaining a job and 9 years of education or
A relevant degree from a university with 1 year of professional experience or
A postgraduate degree in a relevant field with no professional experience
Companies need to complete the required paperwork for a work permit before their employee can apply for the visa. The permit states that the employee in question has a job lined up by the given employer. Employees can’t apply for a visa without having one of the temporary or permanent residence visas.
If a foreign national changes jobs, they must apply for a new permit from their new workplace.
The above permit requirements must be met by all non-Brazilian citizens seeking jobs in the country, and there are no permit exemptions under any circumstances.
Only a legal entity/business can start the permit process for an employee. This means that the employer needs to have an established entity, or partner with an employer-of-record (EOR) service that owns an entity, like Via.
Both the employee and employer handle the visa process.
Employers based outside of the country must submit the necessary forms translated in Portuguese to the General Coordination, who then passes the application off to the Immigration Department. The application then goes to the Ministry of Public Affairs. There, the employee will begin the process of obtaining the visa in their home country. All paperwork must be submitted to a local embassy.
Brazil gives out temporary visas and permits first. These permits last 2 years and can be reissued once. After 4 years and the reissue, the employer can apply to switch the employee’s permit from temporary status to a permanent one. This will allow employees to permanently live abroad.
To begin both the permit and visa process, you will need to include the following competed forms:
Work Permit Application from employer
Applicant and Candidate form
Company statues or contractual alterations registered with a commercial board or Public Civil Registry
Document proving a legal representative has been appointed to represent applicant
Employee must provide address, copy of passport, and educational experience
The fees for applying for a visa vary by the applicant's country of origin.
Anyone applying for a permit can apply to have their family members move with them, depending on the terms and conditions of their permit and visa. The person applying must prove that they live near an embassy so that they can complete the necessary paperwork.
When looking for a job, it’s important to note that the country as a whole is incredibly employee friendly. Employees are entitled to a number of benefits and protections that are not required in the United States.
Prospective employees should be aware that the country’s official language is Portuguese, and many employers do business in Portuguese, though speaking English and Spanish are a huge plus. As Brazil has a diverse amount of industries looking for new employees, job sites and boards like LinkedIn and Indeed are excellent resources for job seekers. For prospective employees based abroad, it is a good idea to hone in on your specialized skills before job hunting.
All foreign employees, including those with temporary and permanent status, need to have a permit submitted by their future employer. Both independent contractors as well as permanent employees are required to have permits that state the time and duration of their business stay.
Companies of all sizes want to hire employees in Brazil, but don’t know how to navigate the international local labor laws. Via makes hiring Brazilian talent and building your global team seamless. With our easy-to-use platform, Via helps you manage local HR processes for direct employment such as work visas & permits, benefits, payroll, background checks, and more. Our team of local labor lawyers and on-the-ground experts ensure that your company remains compliant while expanding abroad. As your employer-of-record/entity abroad, Via assumes responsibility for employment liability, so that you can focus on what matters: recruiting and managing your team.
With Via’s transparent pricing, you can pay full-time employees or contractors across borders with no hidden set-up fees, no foreign exchange or transaction fees, and no minimums–start with 1 employee and scale up at your own pace.